[rdfweb-dev] The Scutter Volume problem

Jeremy Gray jeremy at jeremygray.ca
Tue Mar 16 21:29:58 UTC 2004

> -----Original Message-----
> From: rdfweb-dev-bounces at vapours.rdfweb.org
[mailto:rdfweb-dev-bounces at vapours.rdfweb.org] On Behalf Of Julian Bond
> Sent: Tuesday, March 16, 2004 12:35 PM
> To: rdfweb-dev at vapours.rdfweb.org
> Subject: [rdfweb-dev] The Scutter Volume problem


> Am I being unnecessarily alarmist?

I don't really think so.

> Are there any shortcuts here?

Well, its not a shortcut, but as I've said in the past with regard to other
types of RDF (and non-RDF such as Atom), we really need to stop looking at
the world as a bunch of documents that we crawl and try to import into one
gigantic database and need to start looking at the world as a distributed
information space that is queried dynamically (perhaps caching chunks,
especially those derived via inferencing, for short-term reuse).

> Does it mean that FOAF is only really useful as a data transfer protocol 
> where the data is discarded immediately after being used?

Not if we want to see FOAF expanded to include additional mixed-in
information that we wish to retain once retrieved - if we use FOAF only for
transport and then shift into something like a SQL database we are going to
lose much of that information in the process. Lets be honest - FOAF provides
probably the best hope for bootstrapping the SemWeb, and we'd be well-served
to avoid limiting the range and fidelity of information that FOAF can be
adapted to carry.

What we need right about now are capable RDF databases with query facilities
that can support both local and distributed needs. Any nominees that can at
least get us part of the way even if not all of the way there?

Jeremy Gray

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